By Gracie Gean Bagosy Young
When your producers contacted me about coming onto the Prescription Addiction show, I was flattered and very thankful! I’ll admit, I was also surprised. Mainstream media is in a frenzy about the evils of prescription pain medication. The last thing I expected was for the Anderson Cooper show to reach out to me, a Chronic Pain Advocate. However, CNN boasts “Anderson Cooper 360° goes beyond headlines to tell stories in-depth and from multiple points of view.” I was excited that this might be our chance to explain the difference between an addict and a chronic pain patient that may or may not have developed a physical dependence.
I was told very clearly that I was not guaranteed to be able to speak. Your producer told me that I would be notified just prior to the show if I was selected to speak. That notification never came. I still held out hope! Maybe I would be able to slip in a few words. Maybe during a break I would slide in a comment! That’s the thing about chronic pain patients. We have an abundance of HOPE. Hope for pain relief, hope for cures, hope for a better tomorrow.
I wonder why you invited chronic pain advocates at all if you did not intend to allow us to represent our community.
I am really disappointed that the show did not represent that 360° view as advertised. The doctors on the show spent a good deal of time discussing gateways. I propose that you use the Prescription Addiction: Made in the USA show as the gateway into another conversation that begs to be heard. Let’s discuss the CHRONIC pain community. We are the community that is being punished by these new regulations.
You can’t see our illnesses. Chronic pain is invisible. We are everywhere. We have a lot of skin in the game-and that skin is on fire! Please help give us a voice.
Gracie Gean Bagosy-Young is Director of Take Control of Your Pain – at the US Pain Foundation and is a guest columnist for us at the National Pain Report